(NBC NEWS) -- A huge snow storm could dump more than a foot of snow over parts of the Northeast this weekend.

New York City and Boston are expected to see their heaviest accumulations so far this season as an arctic front pushes across the Great Lakes and collides with a low-pressure system moving across the Midwest.

Lake effect snow is already piling up in parts of New York and Pennsylvania.

"This next system is really going to be a very significant storm for a lot of the country," said Carl Parker, a meteorologist for The Weather Channel. "It's going to grab up plenty of moisture off the Atlantic, throw it back and into the Northeast."

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